Coun­cil of Cana­di­ans says wind devel­oper poised to sue

The Beacon Herald - - FRONT PAGE - Chatham Daily News ELL­WOOD SHREVE POST­MEDIA NEWS

CHATHAM — The Coun­cil of Cana­di­ans says the owner of North Kent Wind is poised to lower the le­gal boom on lo­cal pro­test­ers, but the wind devel­oper coun­ters it has no plans to sue.

The so­cial ac­tion or­ga­ni­za­tion is­sued a me­dia re­lease Wed­nes­day con­demn­ing North Kent Wind’s own­ers, Korean in­dus­trial gi­ant Sam­sung and its Amer­i­can part­ner Pat­tern En­ergy, for fil­ing a “mil­lion-dol­lar-plus” state­ment of claim against Wa­ter Wells First spokesper­son Kevin Jakubec and First Na­tions mem­ber Cindy Soney, along with un­named other per­sons, for their par­tic­i­pa­tion in an 11-day block­ade at a tur­bine con­struc­tion site in late Au­gust. The block­ade was a re­sponse to the im­pacts on wa­ter wells that oc­curred shortly af­ter pile-driv­ing ac­tiv­i­ties took place in the Chatham Town­ship area.

A state­ment of claim is a le­gal doc­u­ment con­tain­ing al­le­ga­tions not yet tested in court.

The Daily News con­tacted the wind devel­oper about this mat­ter and re­ceived this state­ment: “North Kent Wind does not in­tend to sue any­one to re­cover the fi­nan­cial losses it has in­curred due to the block­ade. We have not be­gun any le­gal ac­tion and it is not our in­ten­tion to pur­sue any fur­ther le­gal ac­tion at this time.

“We are fo­cused on bring­ing a new source of clean en­ergy to the lo­cal area, which is cre­at­ing jobs and will bring sub­stan­tial eco­nomic ben­e­fits to the Mu­nic­i­pal­ity of ChathamKent.”

A copy of the state­ment of claim The Coun­cil of Cana­di­ans sent to The Daily News on Wed­nes­day, dated Sept. 1, doesn’t specif­i­cally state the com­pany is seek­ing mone­tary dam­ages. It pri­mar­ily fo­cuses on seek­ing an in­junc­tion to pre­vent “un­law­ful” protests and block­ades at any of the project’s 34 tur­bine con­struc­tion sites.

This in­junc­tion was granted to North Kent Wind in a court rul­ing on Oct. 2.

The state­ment of claim does note con­struc­tion de­lays caused by the block­ade and de­lays ex­pe­ri­enced at other sites “amounts to costs rang­ing from $50,000 to $100,000 per day, cov­er­ing only the cur­rent amount of labour and equipment idle.”

Mark Calzavara, Coun­cil of Cana­di­ans On­tario or­ga­nizer, told The Daily News the base­line stud­ies done by well own­ers can prove “un­equiv­o­cally” that their wa­ter was fine be­fore con­struc­tion be­gan on the wind farm. He added it puts landown­ers “in great shape to even­tu­ally force the com­pany to give them com­pen­sa­tion.”

But that could take sev­eral years, he said.

Jakubec said it was a nec­es­sary ad­min­is­tra­tive step for North Kent Wind to file a state­ment of claim on Oct. 2, af­ter the in­junc­tion was granted, but the com­pany has not served it yet.

He said the rul­ing for the in­junc­tion in­cluded “ir­repara­ble harm sta­tus to Sam­sung.

“The gun is cocked and loaded,” Jakubec added. “If they want to pull the trig­ger, then they would serve it.”

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Canada

© PressReader. All rights reserved.